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State Duma to hold extra session March 20 to ratify re-unification treaty with Crimea

March 19, 2014, 18:42 UTC+3 MOSCOW
After an interstate treaty has been signed, the president submits it to the Constitutional Court for verification and if the latter finds it flawless, it sends it to the parliament for ratification
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© ITAR-TASS/Alexandra Mudrats

MOSCOW, March 19. /ITAR-TASS/. The State Duma, upper house of Russian parliament, will convene for an extraordinary session on Thursday, March 20, to ratify the re-unification treaty with Crimea, First Deputy Duma Speaker Ivan Melnikov said.

“There is the judgment of the Constitutional Court (which recognized the treaty as conforming to the Russian Constitution),” Melnikov told ITAR-TASS on Wednesday, March 19. “In this connection, the State Duma today will debate the draft resolution on holding an unscheduled plenary meeting at 16:00 tomorrow, March 20, to discuss the ratification of the treaty and the adoption of a constitutional law on the creation of two new constituent members of the Russian Federation,” the MP said.

Under the law, after an interstate treaty has been signed, the president submits it to the Constitutional Court for verification and if the latter finds it flawless, it sends it to the parliament for ratification. The Constitutional Court earlier on Wednesday proclaimed the treaty being in conformity with the Constitution of the country,” Court Chairman Valery Zorkin said.

State Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin believes that the president may submit the treaty to the lower house of parliament on Wednesday and promised that “State Duma deputies will ensure the speediest adoption of these two historic acts”.

The Federation Council, the upper house of parliament, has already decided to ratify the treaty at its unscheduled session on March 21.

On March 18, at the Kremlin, President Vladimir Putin, Crimean State Council Chairman Vladimir Konstantinov, Crimean Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov and Sevastopol Mayor Alexei Chaly signed a treaty under which “the Republic of Crimea is deemed to have been admitted to the Russian Federation.” “From the day of the Republic of Crimea’s admission to the Russian Federation, new constituent members - the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol as a city of federal significance - shall be created in the Russian Federation,” the document said.

The treaty applies upon signature and enters into force from the date of ratification.

Under the treaty, a transitional period will continue until January 1, 2015 to solve all issues pertaining to the integration of the new constituent members into the economic, financial, credit and legal systems of Russia, into its government system, as well as issues concerning military duty and military service in the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol.

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